Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Weird Recipe Wednesday: Peanut Butter-Jalapeno-Chocolate Chip Bars

Weird Recipe Wednesday: Because some recipes are so weird I just HAVE to try them.  My curiosity always gets the better of me.

Remember those candied jalapenos I made a few weeks back?  I finally got around to using them in a weird recipe.  But let me back up just a little.  I haven't lost it completely (that or I'm in denial).  If I lay out the tracks, you might be able to follow my train of thought on this one.

 It all started when I saw a recipe for jalapeno fudge.  While taunting my curiosity, I just couldn't bring myself to use that much chocolate on a potential flop.  Only time will tell how long before I give in on that one.  Not long afterword I found a recipe for jalapeno peanut brittle.  I can't bring myself to make peanut brittle unless it's Christmastime, or at least a little closer.  The same goes for fudge for that matter.  And so I tucked away the recipes, filing the ideas in my head for another day.

I didn't think much about them until I came across this recipe for double chocolate jalapeno cookies. Infusing the butter with fresh jalapeno definitely caught my attention, this I had to try for myself.  I settled on a peanut butter cookie recipe and went about simmering the butter and jalapeno.  Long story short, that first attempt had zero heat.  Even my mom, who finds a pinch of black pepper too spicy, had no idea I snuck jalapeno into cookies.  Still intrigued with the idea using jalapeno butter in a dessert,  I went for a second attempt.   Using a different recipe and generous amount of candied jalapenos I began again.

A fingerful of dough found its way into someone's mouth before I could give fair warning.  A sudden cough and gasp for air confirmed the need for a 'caution hot' sign warning any remaining beater-bar-licking suspects.

 Unlike yesterday's spice cake, the spice in these bars mellows with time. The dough is spicier than the baked bars, which include a layer of sweet chocolate chips and drizzle of peanut butter glaze to help cut the heat. The first soft, chewy bite is sweet and nutty, but don't stray too far from that glass of milk.  It takes a few seconds before the heat kicks in.  At first I thought these were way too hot, but by the second day the sweet-spicy factor finds it's proper balance.   That being said, these are not for the faint of heart.

Peanut Butter-Jalapeno-Chocolate Chip Bars


1/4 cup butter
2 Tbsp chopped candied jalapenos
1/4 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg white
1/2 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup chocolate chips

1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 Tbsp peanut butter
1 tsp syrup from candied jalapenos
2 tsp milk

*In a small saucepan melt butter over low heat. Add candied jalapenos and simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool until solid. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
* In a medium bowl cream together jalapeno butter, peanut butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar, beating on high speed with an electric mixer for 2 minutes.  Beat in egg white and vanilla. Stir in flour, baking soda and salt.
* Press dough into an 8-inch square baking pan. Sprinkle with chocolate chips. Bake 15-18 minutes or until edges are golden brown and center is just set. Cool 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare glaze by combining powdered sugar, peanut butter, jalapeno syrup and milk, stirring until smooth.  Drizzle glaze over bars and let cool completely.

Food for Thought: "Never be afraid to trust and unknown future to a known God." -Corrie ten Boom

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